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International Student Office


Information for Incoming Students

This page contains information for exchange students (including under Erasmus) coming to study at Cambridge under a University partnership arrangement. Once you have read through the information, queries can be sent to the International Student Office. 

For information on work placements (including Erasmus traineeships), please contact the relevant department directly. A directory of our Faculties and Department can be found here.

Students who will be studying under exchange arrangements with a Cambridge College should contact the College directly.  

Application to Study

If you wish to study at the University of Cambridge as an Exchange student, you must contact the exchange coordinator at your home institution. We can only consider students from institutions with which we have a current Exchange agreement in the relevant subject area.

Once we have received your nomination from your exchange coordinator, you will be invited to attend a webinar to help you with the application process to Cambridge.

Once you have attended the webinar you will be sent a password and username to access the online application form. You are required to upload the following documents during your application:

Your application must include:

  • Learning Agreement

  • Letter of recommendation from a supervisor, tutor etc

  • University transcript, detailing all exams taken in higher education

  • Your Curriculum Vitae

The relevant Department and College will consider the application and we will contact you to let you know whether your application has been accepted.

Successful applicants will also need to provide:

  • A copy of their passport
  • A passport-type photograph
English Language Assessment

All students who are non-native speakers of English are required to undertake an online English assessment as part of their application. Details of the assessment including passwords will be sent to the student’s exchange coordinator who will make the necessary arrangements for the student to sit the assessment. Assessments are carried out under exam conditions and consist of three parts; reading, writing and listening, each lasting no longer than one hour. After completing these assessments, students take an oral assessment which will be conducted via video conferencing. All assessments must be completed by the relevant application deadline.

Students are exempt from taking the assessment if they already have one of the following qualifications which must have been obtained in the last two years:

  1. IELTS: a minimum overall grade of 7.5, with 7.0 in each element
  2. Cambridge C2 Proficiency  at grade A or B
  3. Cambridge English: C2 Proficiency: minimum overall score of 200, with no element lower than 185.
  4. A TOEFL iBT (including Home edition) with a minimum overall score of 110, with at least 25 in each element
Structure of the year in Cambridge

The University of Cambridge does not operate a modular system; our courses run for the entire academic year, usually with exams in the third term. If you wish to apply for a taught course, you should indicate that you will be here for all three terms. Students are usually expected to submit a series of essays to their supervisor for each course. With the exception of Law, exams are not normally mandatory.

Research students may apply for one, two or three terms. If you are applying to undertake research, you should find an academic member of staff who is willing to act as your supervisor whilst at Cambridge in advance of applying.

At the end of the academic year students will be provided with a transcript of records which will set out the courses taken and the results achieved.

No Exchange student may transfer to a regular Cambridge course during their period of study in Cambridge and thus become eligible for a Cambridge degree.

Deadline details

You must be nominated by your exchange coordinator to by:

31 March for the Michaelmas Term
31 August for the Lent Term
31 October for the Easter Term

The deadlines for your application are:

30 April for the Michaelmas Term
30 September for the Lent Term
30 November for the Easter Term

The Cambridge Academic Calendar can be found here: 

Available Courses

Exchange students who come to Cambridge as participants in exchanges initiated by the Faculty of Modern and Medieval Languages and Linguistics should refer to the following framework regarding their course choice:

*Institutions falling under this framework are: Universität Wien, Université de Paris I Pantheon-Sorbonne, ENS Lyon, Universitat de Vàlencia, Universidad de Zaragoza

Exchange students who come to Cambridge as participants in exchanges initiated by the Faculty of Law should refer to the following framework regarding their course choice:

  • For the Faculty of Law Course Framework (European) click here
  • For the Faculty of Law Course Framework (International) click here.

Students of other subjects should get in touch with the International Student Office ( regarding the choice of courses available.

PLEASE NOTE: In order to maintain confidentiality the International Student Office are only able to discuss a period abroad with the student concerned. We cannot, for instance, discuss a student's situation with a parent, legal guardian or friend unless the student has given permission to do so in writing.


If you are a national of a country outside of the UK or Republic of Ireland, you will need to consider visa requirements for your studies at Cambridge. The required immigration permission depends on the duration you will be studying at Cambridge but most students will be studying for the full academic year and require a student visa. The International Student Office can provide you with the documentation required as well as advice on your application. You will be provided with further information about the immigration requirements as part of the application process. In the interim you may also find the following pages of our website helpful in terms of information on the visa application process and associated costs:

Insurance and Healthcare

You will be covered by the University's public liability insurance during your time in Cambridge. You will need to arrange for travel insurance which should include health and accident insurance. It may be that your host institution provides certain types of insurance cover for you during your time abroad so we strongly recommend that you check with them before you travel.

If you are coming from outside the UK and Ireland for more than 6 months you will be charged a mandatory NHS Surcharge as part of your Student visa application. The current cost is £766 per year for the period the visa will be granted. This will give you free access to the NHS. Some medical services such as prescriptions may incur a charge. If you are coming for less than 6 months as a Visitor, you are advised to take out medical insurance as you will be liable for NHS charges for the treatment you receive in the UK except for in a medical emergency.

Students from the EU and Switzerland studying full-time in the UK may be eligible for a full or partial refund of the immigration health surcharge paid with their visa application if they have a valid European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) issued in an EU country or Switzerland.

For more information please see our International Student webpages

College Membership and Accommodation

Colleges are much more than halls of residence; you will be living, eating, studying and socialising in your College. Your College also provides your pastoral, non-academic support. For information on the Colleges, please see

The process of securing a College can be lengthy, so please be patient. It is not possible to choose your College and it is likely that you will not be offered a second choice.

If it is not possible to find you College accommodation, or you prefer to find your own place to live, you can use the University’s Accommodation Service.

Whilst you will not be charged fees during your time at Cambridge, the cost of living in the city may be higher than at your home university. We have estimated that you should allow £11,020 a year for living costs. Please note that you may be asked for financial guarantees to cover accommodation costs.

Your College will send you all the information on coming to Cambridge, including travel, dates of term and any student induction events.


The University of Cambridge does not operate a credit system, including ECTS. All Exchange students receive a transcript at the end of their studies at Cambridge showing the courses they have studied, including any assessment results, and the ECTS equivalent. As an approximation, one term studying full time at Cambridge as an Exchange student is equivalent to 20 ECTS credits. It is important to have an up to date Learning Agreement to ensure your course of study is sufficient for your home institution to award you the correct number of credits for your time in Cambridge.

Exchange students are not eligible to receive a Cambridge degree for the period of study in Cambridge. 

Academic Development and Training for International Students In-Sessional Programme

Whilst you're here in Cambridge, you will, of course, be using your English language skills on a daily basis, but if you feel that you'd like to concentrate on fine-tuning in particular your academic English skills, then you might like to have a look at the University's ADTIS Support Programme for international students.

The programme consists of focused two-hour workshops and individual supervisions with an ADTIS supervisor. Each term there are 2-3 workshops a week on such topics as 'Editing your Writing', 'Presentation Skills', 'Achieving a readable style', and 'Debating'. You can attend as many of these as you want to throughout the course of the year. Whilst the workshops aim to cover the wider generic aspects of English at both undergraduate and postgraduate level, the one-to-one supervisions are tailored to the needs of the individual student. Let your home university know if you decide to register for the course as they may be able to help you with funding.

You'll find details about how to register and the fees involved on our website: Language Centre

If you have any questions, please e-mail:

Please note that only students accepted at the University of Cambridge under a University Partner Exchange programme (including Erasmus) are eligible to apply for this course.